514 Tasting Notes


I got this tea as a sample in my Republic of Tea catalog. I usually don’t try the samples because they rarely appeal to me, but this one seemed like it could be good.

It smelled alright after brewing – maybe not the greatest thing ever, but good enough. The first sip was overwhelmingly sweet. Not something I’d drink again, but I didn’t think it was too bad for the time being. A few more sips into it and all that sweet and funky flavor built up into a cup of nope. And that’s all I have to say about that.

Flavors: Artificial, Cinnamon, Sweet

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The floral in this is almost non existent. In the early days, when I wasn’t fond of floral, I recall that high mountain oolongs were my less flowery gateway into appreciation of stronger florals, but I don’t remember them being this lacking in the floral department.

Nevertheless, this is a good oolong. Nutty, creamy, bready. It’s like Teavivre’s Superfine Taiwan Qing Xiang Dong Ding Oolong Tea without the floral. If I pay attention, I can detect a slight floral aroma and a mild sweet taste that may or may not be attributed to a floral flavor. Perhaps I’ve become desensitized to the florals and don’t notice them as well when they are subtle.

Flavors: Bread, Cream, Nuts, Vegetal

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Sweet, roasty, yummy. I like roasted oolongs, but sometimes they get carried away with the roast. It’s nice when other flavors sneak through as they do in this tea. It must be a tieguanyin thing. I’ve only had one other roasted tieguanyin that I can remember and it was sweet too – but more floral sweet where as this one is fruity sweet.

Flavors: Fruity, Roasted, Sweet

190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 0 sec 4 OZ / 118 ML

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After noticing the flavors listed with this tea’s description, I almost thought I was still on the page for the Qing Xiang Dong Ding that I just reviewed. I wouldn’t have described this one as nutty or bready. Creamier than other tieguanyins, yes. I suppose the creamy texture can easily lead one to think of a nutty flavor. Perhaps it would stand out more to me if I didn’t sample it in such close proximity to the Dong Ding which is super nutty bread supreme, lol.

The floral in this is sweeter, rather than sharp, relative to some others I’ve had. Not much else to say here. It’s a tasty cup of delicate floral with a hint of cream. :)

2 min, 30 sec

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After a while, all the teas of the same type start to blend together and I forget what an oolong I’ve had in the past tastes like relative to one I’m having now. Or what the difference is between Dong Ding and Tieguanyin. So, After my first isolated cup of this tea, I decided to brew it with two other oolongs I had in my cupboard (one a tieguanyin and another unknown, but I strongly suspect that it is also tieguanyin).

Unfortunately, I have no other Dong Dings to compare it with at the moment, but the tieguanyins definitely helped to put things in perspective and help me to isolate certain characteristics that I would otherwise be oblivious to.

So, without further ado, my tasting notes:
This one has a very creamy mouthfeel. I notice the floral notes first, especially in the aroma. As the tea cools it develops a nutty or bready flavor. Not something I am used to in a green oolong. However, after reading some other tasting notes, it looks like there is some question as to whether or not this oolong is slightly roasted. I’d still say its a green one, albeit unique.

the creamy breadiness sort of works its way into a soupy vegetal flavor — almost. It’s as if it’s trying to become a green tea but not quite. The floral brings it back to its senses. :p

Pretty good over all.

Flavors: Bread, Creamy, Floral, Nuts, Vegetal

2 min, 30 sec

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Very unique flavor. There are distinct honey, floral, and fruit notes that I am more accustomed to finding in leafhopper oolong teas, but this tea is not as heavy on my stomach as those oolongs tend to be.

I can’t see myself drinking this tea on a regular basis – I tend to go through alternating phases of craving or being completely put off by honey notes – but it may show up in my cupboard from time to time.

Flavors: Floral, Fruity, Honey, Sweet

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec

OOO a new harvest of this one! And I notice Teavivre has a new Ancient Tree in stock. I wish they had these when I ordered so I could have bought samples.


This is part of my new-to-teavivre mass sampling order. I ordered a sample of like, everything. haha. I didn’t realize there was a previous version of this already on stepsister. For some reason, I couldn’t find it when I searched originally, so I created a new entry :o


ugh, autocorrect. stepsister = Steepster*


Yeah, the Stepsister autocorrect made me laugh. :D If you didn’t post another entry though, I wouldn’t have noticed it was a new harvest. I’m glad to see they are still selling it!

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I’ve only ever had a couple silver needle tees that I absolutely love. I tend to prefer White Peony as far as white teas go.

While this isn’t my favorite white tea, it has some things going for it. It has the characteristic hay flavor, of course, but it’s not so intense to either make me sick or feel like I’m eating my father’s horse-food-flavored cereal. Instead, it has a subtle hay note and a creamy mouthfeel. Sometimes I can detect something sweet, but it comes and goes.

Flavors: Cream, Hay, Nuts, Sweet

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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I brewed half of my 5g sample yesterday and the rest of it today, both with 12 oz water for 3 min. For some reason, though, yesterday’s cup seemed sweeter and more floral than today’s. Perhaps I didn’t divide the sample as equally as I thought. Today the tea tastes much stronger of hay. Apparently this tea can be easily tweaked to bring out more or less of these flavors. A gong fu brewing would probably yield the best of everything, but I only take the time for that once in a while.

Flavors: Floral, Hay, Sweet

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 g 12 OZ / 354 ML

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I bought a whole bunch of samples from Teavivre recently. I haven’t explored much of what Teavivre has to offer before now. I bought some tea-ware from there a while ago and received a couple of samples then, but that’s the extent of my experience.

I’ve had two cups of this tea today (12oz water, 175F, 3min steep). For the first I used 1.5tsp of leaves. The smell while brewing was fairly strong of wood, mineral, and pepper. I expected a stronger flavor in the cup, but it is surprisingly delicate. I brewed a second cup with the remainder of the sample (more than 1.5tsp, less that a tbs) and the flavor is slightly stronger.

It’s nice, but not my favorite green tea.

Flavors: Mineral, Pepper, Vegetal

175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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As per Brenden’s recommendation, I mixed up the contents of the bag to make sure nothing was settled on the bottom. The result was a stronger vanilla aroma in the brewed cup. But the vanilla still seems to get lost in the flavor. I think what is coming across as a much deeper and creamier chocolate note (relative to straight North Winds) is resultant from the vanilla. It’s like like chocolate ice cream, :p But I probably wouldn’t have known to credit vanilla if I didn’t know it was there in the first place ;) Sneaky vanilla!

Whispering Pines Tea Company

Hehe, that’s exactly how it should be ;-)


I had some of this today too, actually, and that’s how it tasted too – chocolate ice cream. It was the best cup of it I’ve had so far.

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Name: Shelley Lorraine Limegrover
Location: Thornton, Colorado

Hobbies: Learning, reading books, math, physics (have a degree in it), literature (have a degree in it too), anthropology, traveling, piano, and drinking TEA, of course (^o^)

Favorite teas: Kukicha, Green teas in general, aged oolongs, charcoal roasted oolong, taiwanese oolongs, Assam . . .

Don’t like: Genmaicha, Earl Grey, Darjeelings, ginger, coconut, smokey teas (even mild ones), nut flavors, overwhelmingly strong floral flavor (esp. Jasmine), most della derra and adagio teas. . .

My Rating System

100 My happiness absolutely depends on it

95 Will definitely repurchase

85: Might repurchase (teas that depend on my mood)

75 Won’t repurchase (but I would drink it again if offered).

65: meh

45: I reluctantly finished a cup.

15: Couldn’t finish a cup.

I simplified my ratings to single numbers rather than ranges because I can’t precisely compare so many teas with a system more detailed than this.

An unrated tea is most often one that I recognize as having significant notable quality, but that does not suit me personally. Sometimes, I leave teas unrated for other reasons, such as I am undecided or I brewed it wrong, etc.

Note: Boiling temp. barely reaches 200 where I am (and a few times it sticks at 195, I assume due to unexplainable shifts in altitude or the position of the moon. . .aliens?. . .).





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